President Thein Sein has announced the formation of a committee to tackle corruption in Burma’s notoriously secretive government bodies, state media said on Wednesday.
The nine-member committee, led by Vice-President Dr Sai Mauk Kham, will coordinate efforts to eliminate bribery and promote good governance in the former pariah state, according to the New Light of Myanmar.
Thein Sein, who has overseen a dramatic democratic reform programme in Burma since taking office in March 2011, has previously vowed to address the country’s notorious record on corruption. In December last year, he publicly pledged to eradicate graft and promote transparency in a televised speech.
“Departments at various levels of administration have failed to listen to the voices of the people and lack transparency,” he said. “Bribery and corruption must be effectively prevented.”
It followed news that fifteen state ministries were order to repay some $230,000 “missing” from government coffers in the fiscal year 2011-2012.
Burma ranked 172 out of 176 countries measured in Transparency International’s 2012 corruption perception index.